1/4 of families would cancel Christmas – Home for the Holidays coming to Channel 4

by Lisa McGarry

Are we a nation of scrooges? One in four Brits would cancel Christmas if they could, says a new study examining British attitudes around the festive season and what causes the biggest Yuletide conflicts.

Almost 1/4 of us would cancel Christmas if we could

1/3 of us can’t get through 12 hours with family before arguments brew

Money, TV, Drink and In-Laws are top causes of arguments at Christmas

1/3 admit the predominant feeling in the run up to the festive season is stress

The survey of 2,000 people, commissioned to mark the launch of Channel 4’s Christmas series Home for the Holidays on Sunday 18th December, shed light on the stresses and strains placed on families throughout the Christmas period, with a third of us admitting that we are likely to have a family dispute this Christmas, and a quarter of us admitting that we dislike spending time with our in-laws during the holidays.

It seems the peace and harmony will be short lived as 30% of Brits say it would take less than 12 hours for arguments to surface between relatives, with 22% saying arguments are likely to happen first thing Christmas morning.

One in three Brits admit to feeling stressed in the run up to Christmas, with money worries emerging as the top cause of family arguments at this time of year. The top ten also saw families confess to coming to blows over what to watch on TV, rows over the Christmas Day itinerary, and conflicts brewing over drunken family members having a very ‘merry’ Christmas.

The full top ten appears below:

Money -29.85%

TV viewing choices – 17.80%

Itinerary/what to do on Christmas Day – 13.65%

Drunk members of the family – 13.30%

Scrooge in the family – 12.55%

In-laws – 11.55%

Overcrowding – 11.40%

Board games – 8.25%

Christmas dinner dietary requirements – 8.20%

Present envy – 6.00%

The soaring cost of Christmas was further revealed with Brits admitting to spending an average of £479 on the day and 20% of us spending between £500 and £1000 – a whopping price tag in the current economic climate.

Home for the Holidays, hosted by Vernon Kay, will put these Christmas crises to the test as a young couple live together with both sets of families under one raucous roof live on Channel 4. Festive frolics will then ensue as the family faces tinsel temptations and yuletide games in a bid to win a fantastic Christmas present – up to half a million pounds.

Syeda Irtizaali, Channel 4’s Commissioning Editor for Entertainment said: “The survey reveals that, while there is no doubt Christmas tradition and family spirit prevails, it doesn’t take long for festive friction to get in the way. Home for the Holidays will put the spotlight on one family as they endure these trials and tribulations of family festivity.”